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>>tonight on "worldfocus" -- > getting out the vote as afghanistan prepas for national elections, weook at the challenges facinthe process --aliban threats, remote voting stationslus just teaching people w to vote. meanwhile s. and nato troops continue battle with the taliban. tonit, an up close look at the fighting. in fact for the brith tv crew. maybe a bit too clos >>and as washington welcomes egyptian president hosni mubarak we look atis popularity bk home. after 28-years as theileader egyptianhave lots to say and much of it isn't gd. from the world's leadi reports and analysts, here is what's happening from ound the world. this is "worldfocu"
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reporter: just days ahead o the elections. many residents doubt it will be fe enough to vote. but u.s. forces and the government are determined ensure polling stationsre open.
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>> it will be eleion here and may modest, but you kow so far as i'm concerned if one person comes out to vote then that's enough suck jes afghan and eltion observers say there is enough chance elections will be freelyand fair. therecarious situation means it will be impossie to have observerat every pollg stion. >> many americans might not realize is that afghanistan's actually a colleion of many ethn groups. the tw biggest beg the park tonsnd the tajiks. not surprisingly, in afghanisn, as in many places around the world, ny people are excted to vote along ethnic lines. and as thursday's elecon proaches, the leading candidatesre doing all they can to turn t their vote with the help of tribal eers. we wanted go into greater detail about this importanand undeeported aspect of the election. so we chose this rept comes
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from zei khodr of al jazeera english. >> reporter: it's the tribes o hold sway in the park ton tribal vote. tribal elders who havthe last choice. and that's why the brher and campaign manager of president hamid kzai in the south has been curting tribal elders without winning th over, no contendestands a chance. >> pashtun a eremely impoant because pashtu are the majority in pakistan i don't think thatwithout the pashtun te no one can win. >> reporter: kandahar is the main population center in southern afghanistan. the pashtun heartla. it is not onl the electoral base and hometown of president karzai but also the supporbase of the talib. there is one chlenger whose na is not on this ballo paper, the talib. and they have vowed to disrup the ections. if they do there will a lo voter turnout, whi meanshat
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it will be difcult for any candidate to secure the 50% of voteseeded to avoid a runoff. dr. abdullah abdulah is kaai's main chaenger, son of a pashtun father but still seen by many herby someone who is lackinwhat is athe heart of the phtun vote. the tribal allegiance. >> translator: wll vote for the rson who is fr our land and works for our gnity. we will vo for karzai. >> reporter: d abduah, who has caaigned in kandahar, is seen as close to the tajik communitbecause of links with the northern alliance. the grp that helped topp the taliban in 21. >>ranslator: i voteor hamid karzai. willnot vote for abdullah abdullah. he speaks the language of the taji. >> reporter: tders are also involved in dfficulty >> reporter: tders are also involved in dfficulty negotiatns here true t
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becae for the patuns the question doesn't seem to for whom to vote for, but whether o not they will cast tir vote at all. for more on thursday's presidential election afghanistan, wre joined by al thier, the director of the future of afghanisn project at the ited states institute of peace, based in washgton, d.c. welce back. >> please to be here. >> the were fresh reports today about efforts by the taliban to intimate afghans intoot voting. can ghanistan hold a broadbased ection that will be viewed as legitimate under these coitions. >> wellt's very difficult. court positionn afghanistan rticularly in the south fraut. there is comt going on right now between ahan and ternational forces between t taliban. the taliban are maki threa directly to pele if they vote. and so peopl simply getting out
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to the pos is challenge. some 1,200 polling stations out of 7,000 in afghanian were declared t dangerous just a fe weeks ago and were moved or closed. so security could depress the outcome of this electionthat in a way that could chaenge its legiticy. >> and regardless of wh wins, will theew president rllye able to we'd real ahority througho the cotry or will many areas just remain beyond the new control of the new governme? >> well, thinkhose things are intricaly related i think that th next president of afghanistan, whethert's hamid kaai or one of his challeers, is ging to have is a new mandate to take afghanista in a direction aw from t problem that i has been fang over the last four or five years, the growth of the insurgcy. certainly thobama administraon is also trying to turn over a new leaf. i think the are two keys to an improved rategy.
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the fir is obviously increased security and that's not only out killing insurgents but also abt making t afgh pulation feel more sere. and it's abt justice. it's about rootingut the problems of corruion that have turned my afghans away from the government. >> no matter whoins, is it likely to change theature and the durati of the american mission there? >> well, i dohink that the outcome of this electiocould ha a serious impactn the american engagementin afghanista ultimatelyleadership fro the top is ging to be cessary fr the afghani to clear turn thingsround and wheter it's a question of political reconciliation with the liban, improving th record of afgn security forces, rooting out corrupon, dealing with the narcotics proble these are things that ultitely require afan ledership, and witht strongfghan leadership,the united stes can't deal with these problems and so i do think that t
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outcome ofhe election and t perception t tis is a legimate election can seriously impact the potential for u.s. success in afghanistan. >> alex their, thank you for joining us tonight >> my pleasure. as we' said, the elections are taking place aa time when the situation in afghanistan seems as insecure ever. there was noonly that bombing at nato headarters but as we've been rerting, casualtyounts are soaring as americans and british rces go onhe offensive against the taliban. our xt report comes from kunare afghanistan. wehose it because it will offer you a rare glimpse of e violence u.s. soiers encounter virtlly every day during this mostly invisiblear. itn's nick pon walsh has our report.>> reporter: 2: a.m. ro to one of america's most besieg outposted. the pilots won't land in this valley exct on the darkest of nigh when they're escortedby
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gunships. the talin oftenlie andait inhe darkness o th rmote valley. the gunshi fire a missile io th hillside, aarning shot. outpost is theurther reach of america power surrnded by motains here in thepakistani border. a landing so the pilots worried that their zor blades could clipthe hillside. this ithe only way in or out of a ty piece of land. america fls it has to hold on to but isn't sure why. and while the wor's only superpower has found itself trapped. the hills all around offer beau and also nstant deadly atcks. >> we're surround in a bol. so we're constantly -
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>> reporr: captain porter leads a few dozen men pinned down among the sanags. they don't he much contact with the locals apart fr when they sotat their base. >> over 35 contacts with he emy since we've been here ju under three months. so keeping uson our toes. >> reporter: why? >> my boss told me to comehere. >> reporter: an afghan army patrol returns to ba from the hill they're accompanie by -- soldiers w were training them part of nato. li here is a waitg game, and then the very worst happens. one moment it's a -- morng. the next it's -- fell onto our cameraman. the buet so close the fragment t his leg. there's a rush cov.
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we don't know where to r or which hill these shots are coming from. [ gunfire ] >> reporter: thefghan soldiers return firelindly over the hills but aricans inside the base wait, lookingor the insurgents. soon they see it. [ gunfire ] th is how the war go here. a few shells from the taliban met with overwhelming arican firepower. >> what this is what btle agonizing is about.
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now unr heavy ttack. appears to hav gone on for abt 30 minutes or so. no idea when it is goi to start. >> tt was nick paton walsh of itn. another pect of the war in afghanistan often overlook in this countrys the british ro. britain s the second largest contingent of trps there. 9,000 of them. d as they've gone on the offensive, the numr of their dead and wounded is increang as wel its andrew thomas has that part of the story. reporter: the 200 britis soldier to die fro wounds sustained inafghanistan, e milestone no one wanted to pass. private richd hunt from aber vergheny blowed upn a roadsid bomb last thursdy, died of his injuries in cecil hospital and burning them satury. also released a pture of the first of four soldiers who were killed while on footpatrol on saturd. sergeant simon valentine a fatherf two wh alsoerved in iraq. comparatively lucky ese seldierss described as a
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halfway hoe between hospil and home. the country's fit army recoveryenter. soldiers he in the final stage of rehabilitation bere they head home or even return to the theater of war. >> i would really like to go ck into service aga. where the batlions to afghantan next april. and i would like to deploy with them,but that the moment in time, i'm just, you know, i don't know what's gng to happen to be honest. ve got a lot more on myplate. >>eporter: this center, its opening attended by the outgoing headf the army and othe planned elsewhere wl be in strong demand fig ths morning showing ath dramatic rise in serious ries among soldiers in ghanistan. from eight in m and 13 innd june to 31 in so far thisye,ar 76ith 236 injure incti in total.
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onmore than for the wholef 2008. overl tsincemo start of nctary action in afghantan, 245 have been serusly wounded in acion. 790 wounded inll. >> these ceers are really important. they're need urgently and the next one wl be rolng ou anthen looking atthers a when we can the perience of this center a the center. >> reporter: the increase for fighng in afghanist is bourne out too by t number of deaths. in 200 there were39. there were 42 in 2007. 51n 2008. soar this year, they've already been 66. the st sixks wee haveeen particularly brutal with more than h wofan this year's at.hs. 13 already dd this month included five over the weekend. 22 were kled july. the glimmer of hope, t brish
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coander in afghanistan saying that in parts of helmand province, control cou be handed over to afghanforces mediately. perhs then the rates of british deat and injuries could fall fromts current peak >> tt was andrew thomas of itn. one otr related item we wanted to call your attentioto tonight all thiseek we are partnering with the webse to find quality reporting abouafghanistan. help us pick the best ws coverage aut this important story by going to and then clicking on the newshunt button. >> the commandg general of american forces inraq, ray ordieno, says that al qaa is exoiting ethnic tensions in the north ofhat country, and he proposing that some of the 132,000 americanroops still there be redepyed to end a cent surge of bombings. just last ek, dozens of people were killed in a doue truck bombing near the city of mos. ny of the dead and wounded h en sleeping on their roofs because the summer heat. >>concerns about global
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terrorm are also front and center during gh-level talks going on this we in yemen. a delegation ofour u.s. senators, including johnccain, are in that couny for meetings withhe yemeni president ali abdullah saleh you'll recall that yem is the cestral home of osama bin laden anwas the site of the bombing nine yea ago of the "ussole" in the gulf of aden. 17 amecan sailors were killed in that bomb blast. > still one more note about terrorism tonight. ina's prime minister says that he has "credle information" -- his words -- that milint oups in pakistan are plannin new attackon his country. last novemr, 166 people were killed in muai in an operation parently conceiv and organized in pakistan. the talk of ina today was the detention over the weend by customs oicials at newark aiort of one of india's most famous actors, sharukh khan. khan is a muslim and his ne came uon a computer alert
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list. many indians likgayatri goswami of mumbai expresd outrage. she writes -- he detention was shameful. the u.s. sulapologize. they better." but others wermuch more undersnding. one indian man implored hi countrymen wake up, india. wake u it time for tight security. i would appreciate iif india takes milar actions against each and every person whenters and exits dia. and another si tonight that t global recession seems to be ending. at leasthe worst of it. japan, the world's second largeseconomy, announced today that its economyrew at an annual rate of 3.7% in t cond quarter. helped along by an increase exportto china. you'll recall that the econoes ofermany and france also rebounded ring the last quarter. spite all of this though, stock markets fell srply around theorld today.
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and now to the middle ea ident hosni mubak is in washinon for high-level talks with obama admintration officials. and amera has a lot riding on mubarak. the united stas gives some $2 billion a year to egypt,hich remains one of o most reliable arab alls. t egypt's future is murky. mubarak is now 81 yearold and, by some accounts, is in failg health. d no successor has been named. what does itll mean, especially at a timehen there some level of discontent thin egypt? to help make sensef it all, we turn to abc australia'middle st correspondent ben knight. >> reporter: in e heart of cair murad sabri mustafa is comin home tthe apartment he's preparing to lea. he's off to libya, whi now fers him better prospects th the couny he was born in. >> the income he is very low, to have - to save from ando have a good li. >> reporter: tre are many like him in egypt's mide class, and
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theye tired of watching their country stagte. >>e need change. i saw a lot of egyptiansn other countries. they are sceed. >> reporter: b change is something egtians don't often see. for 28 years hosni mubarak has been the country'sresident. >> most egyptians ve only knn one president, and i think they have me to see that egypt has not developed economicly over this periodike many other untries have and has certain not develod politically. egypt is no more democratic today an it was when president mubarak came to power in 198 >> reporter: that was wh anwar sat was assassinated by muslim extrists. hosni mubarak had to act to op an iamic uprising in the country. he d, and has done so ever since. he's alskept up the country's treaty with israel, all which has made ept a crucial ally of the united states in theegion, ich provides it with around billion a year in onomic and military aid. but egyps lack of democracy makes for an uomfortable
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relationship. thmain opposition party, the muslim brothhood, is banned, many of its leaderhave been jailed and there have en allegations of eleoral fraud. among the peop, the regime of hosni murak is far from popular, but it's aprently unshakeable. in the past, the president h said he'll die in the jo but more recently, there have be hints the -year-old may step wn at the next election. as yet, he'siven no indication of who, after 28 years o absolute rul should follow him as president. but there are many in this country that believe his s mal will get the job. >> reporter: thether candidate mo often mentioned is this man, omar suleiman, e head of egypt's foreign-intelligen serve.
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this is the great pyrad of khufu, whoas the pharaoh o egypt for more tn 20 years. but at's not as long a hosni mubarak has been in arge. in fact, ere've only been a handful of egyptian rulers who've lasted longer. khufu left as his legacyne of the seven nders of t world. hosni murak's will be far less impressive. >> he will be citicized because didn't really make thbig transformationo democracy. >> reporter: it willake more than a change of president to make that t happen. ben knight, "le line. ." >> joing us to disss u.s.-eptian relations that issues that are likely to ben the agenda whepresident mubarak meets withresident oba tomorrow is salameh nematt welcome. thank you.
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>> as tries to come up with so middle east deal what ro does envision for president mubarak. >> the obama admistration wouldike to see steps to normize steps with israel. with israel since 1979but it was t has been a cold peace and the obama administrati would like to e some warming up of relatisof kind of changesf visits. so kind of concsions, if you like, to israel, such as allowi flyovs of airplanes, iseli airplanes over egyptian airspace, things ke that,in order to create a more kind of positive atmosphere that would helpaunch the peace procs. the other hand,he egyptians insist that israel should freeze all selement activity inhe palestinia occupied territies in order to facilate such moves. >> egypts easily the most popuus country in the region with 83 million peoplebut is
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it is as influenal as used to be. >> it's probably as influential as it used to be. it is aeading member of the arab league. and it doesset the tone, the potical tone, if you ike, for th arab side in terms of you ow if eyptgoes towards normalizatioof relations with israel, other countries a likely to be encouraged to do so. the problem that therab de, the palestinn side, is dided between the moderte palestinian authority on the west bnk and the hardline hamas islamic movement in gaza tting on the israeli si. the isyales are dived between thos who want to accept the basis for the gotiations with -- wi the palestinian side who are wilng to ho settlements, fight territories in the hadliners who do not dopt that so on both sdes are ere problems. the obama administration's trying to reac some nd of coon ground that would move or relaunch the peace process
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>> presint obama has been criticizedy some who say his administration's been toquick to embrace wha the consider mubarak's utilitarian regime. >> i think it's prably showing the ama administration's pragmatism in dealing with this sue. on the one hd it is calling -- it i still upholding presential freedom, democracy and human rights, but it's not mang a big isue out of these matters which makes it easier for the mubarak government. at the same time, there i this criticism that perhaps the currentdministrationis notas seris about spreading demoacy in that part of the world and that of cours hurts it's credibilityo so extent. >> salameh nett, thank u for joining usonight. >> you'rwelcome. >> one imptant programming
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note. charlie ro has an exclusive inteiew with hosni mubarak. check your local listis. want to end on a potive part ne so we start with thailand. where a 48-year-olelephant has been fitted with a permanent artificial limb.he animal lost her footnd part of her leg when she steppedn a land mine 10ears ago near the border with myanmar. hefirst steps were a little tentative. but as the ap tellit, within 10 minutes, she grabbed me dust with hetruck and, it is said, jubilantly sprayed it the air. and that's "worldfocusfor this monday nht. remeer to visit our websitet welcome your comments. i've martin savidgin new york. od night. "worldfocus" was made posble in part by t following "worldfocus" was made posble in part by t following funds -- -- caions by vitac --
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